Author Topic: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?  (Read 2112 times)  

Online Kal241

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #25 on: January 16, 2018, 08:32:45 PM »
I use Paint Tool Sai.

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Offline Anna Drake

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #26 on: January 17, 2018, 06:31:36 AM »
I keep being amazed with what you can do in Canva.

I agree, another Canva fan here.


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Offline dgcasey

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #27 on: January 17, 2018, 09:27:38 AM »
I use PaintShop Pro to design my covers and ads. I've been using it since the early 2000's and it works for me. I do use GIMP for one thing and one thing only. PSP doesn't do a very good job of creating a print-ready PDF file, while GIMP does so flawlessly. So I create and design in PSP and use GIMP to do the PDF.
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Offline thesmallprint

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #28 on: January 17, 2018, 09:32:22 AM »
It won't be much longer imo until Affinity push Adobe away from the subscription model. Affinity Publisher is set for release this year to  join the superb Photo and Designer products. I'm far from expert but have read a number of experts who've gone over to Affinity on the basis that it does 95% or more of what Adobe does.

Online Klendark

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #29 on: January 17, 2018, 10:07:20 AM »
I've used Photoshop Elements for about a decade or so, so I just stuck with it. I've been able to come up with very good covers, so I can't complain. Good luck!

I also use Photoshop Elements which I upgrade every few years. It's a matter of familiarity with the product.

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Offline ruecole

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #30 on: January 17, 2018, 03:56:23 PM »
I use PaintShop Pro to design my covers and ads. I've been using it since the early 2000's and it works for me. I do use GIMP for one thing and one thing only. PSP doesn't do a very good job of creating a print-ready PDF file, while GIMP does so flawlessly. So I create and design in PSP and use GIMP to do the PDF.

Oh, that's clever. I use CorelDraw to create my PDFs but that costs $120 per year (and I think it's increasing this year!). I think it may be time to install Gimp. Lol

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Online Dpock

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #31 on: January 17, 2018, 04:56:27 PM »
Adobe Photoshop Elements 2.0 -- from 2000!  -- is great and you can buy it (one-time expense!) on Amazon.


Offline Kay Bratt

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #32 on: February 02, 2018, 06:13:50 AM »
Does anyone have a designer they can recommend that does graphics such as Facebook ads/headers? (Graphic designers feel free to comment if you are available)


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Offline Christa_Tomlinson

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #33 on: February 02, 2018, 07:18:17 AM »
I'm another lover of Canva. But also MyECoverMaker is great if you'd like to make 3-D e-reader, paperback, etc images of your book. They've got a large 3-D selection and the site is easy to use. The charge is $14.95 a month for unlimited use, but I think they have an option to do individual and/or free images as well.

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Offline MClayton

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #34 on: February 02, 2018, 08:11:23 AM »
I use a very old version of Photoshop, but recently came across Pixlr, which is nearly identical to my old Photoshop, and is also completely free: https://pixlr.com/  I don't need it at this time, but have it saved in case my P/S gets buggy. The downside (for those not familiar with Photoshop) is it comes with no instructions, but there are many videos on YouTube that will walk you through how to use it.

Regarding stock photos, Canstock has some wonderful photos starting at $12.00. The $7.00 option is plenty big enough for covers, etc. https://www.canstockphoto.com/myaccount.php

Offline MClayton

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #35 on: February 02, 2018, 08:16:32 AM »
Does anyone have a designer they can recommend that does graphics such as Facebook ads/headers? (Graphic designers feel free to comment if you are available)

There are a couple of free banner-creating options out there: http://www.timelinecoverbanner.com/ and http://www.bannerfans.com/banner_maker.php

Offline KinkyCat

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #36 on: February 02, 2018, 08:30:24 AM »
I use Paint.net to create my covers except for the box sets and 3D (paperback) images.  I go to Pixlr for that because it's easy to manipulate images.

For images, I use DepositPhotos for about 99% of my images unless I find one on another (and usually more expensive) website that I want.
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Offline Dragovian

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #37 on: February 02, 2018, 08:34:57 AM »
It won't be much longer imo until Affinity push Adobe away from the subscription model. Affinity Publisher is set for release this year to  join the superb Photo and Designer products. I'm far from expert but have read a number of experts who've gone over to Affinity on the basis that it does 95% or more of what Adobe does.
If anything, I think Affinity will force Adobe to keep the subscription model. Adobe always cost 10x what Affinity charges, or more; $10-$20/month is easier for most people to swallow than several hundred dollars to purchase an Adobe product.

I do think Adobe's future is going to wind up being in the corporate environment they already have locked down, rather than individual consumers.


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Offline rdperry57

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #38 on: February 02, 2018, 02:51:22 PM »
I use Canva and GIMP. Both free and both excellent!

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Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #39 on: February 02, 2018, 10:59:56 PM »
I use Canva as well for Youtube Art, my Romance Series (under Pen Name), Promo ads for Instagram, etc. I also use PicMonkey sometimes. I created the Montgomery Vale series through Pic Monkey. OJ book created from Canva.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2018, 11:01:43 PM by Marseille, France or Bust »

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Offline WegR

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #40 on: February 03, 2018, 12:26:11 AM »
Gimp for background images, then do the lettering in Scribus (particularly good for doing the blurb on the back cover) and convert to CMYK for export to PDF/X.

Thing to mention about Gimp is that it doesn't natively export to PDF/X (not necessary for Createspace, but 'proper' printers will require this for colour covers), nor does Gimp do CMYK colourspace natively. There is an add-on to do the CMYK colourspace, but you still end up with the PDF/X export limitation. (Don't need CMYK or PDF/X for ebook covers, just the printed versions).

Another option to Gimp is Krita (also free pricewise and Free Software) - it handles CMYK natively and is quite good at opening Photoshop files if you need that. It doesn't export to PDF at all, they suggest you export it as a graphic and open up in Scribus to save as PDF/X.

Offline katc

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #41 on: February 03, 2018, 03:09:08 AM »
I use Photoshop, Illustrator and Paint Shop Pro.

Offline HN Wake

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #42 on: February 05, 2018, 04:09:52 AM »
Love Canva. I upgraded but realized I didn't need it and reverted back to free. I do almost everything there.  I only use PS if I need font manipulation, but then I send it back 'up' to Canva online to use.

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Offline SueSeabury

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #43 on: February 05, 2018, 04:50:22 AM »
Another vote for Canva. I am so impressed at what they let you do for free.
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Offline kathrynoh

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #44 on: February 05, 2018, 07:46:10 AM »
I find Canva can be good sometimes but not always. Either you can make something usable in minutes or sink hours into trying to get something right, esp with text placement. I used to export to Picmonkey for doing text but that's all paid now, no free option.

Offline Marty South

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Re: Question for authors who do their own graphics/marketing?
« Reply #45 on: February 05, 2018, 09:47:27 AM »
A couple weeks ago I cheaped out and canceled my Photoshop subscription. I'd had it for several years, and realized I'd spent over a thousand dollars to make ads and a few simple book covers. So I embarked on a quest to find the best substitute. I've encountered two unresolved issues: CMYK (huge if you make your own print covers), and smart object and action capability (which I mainly use for making 3-D covers).

My experiences (on a Mac):
GIMP: I've glanced at this periodically over the years. I just don't like the user experience. It's inelegant, but gets most jobs done.
Photoshop Elements: It does most of what I need (except for the above), but is surprisingly different in layout from Photoshop.
Pixelmator Pro (the new 2-month-old Pro version): LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this. But I'm not sure yet if it's the best for most of my needs. No CMYK (but at least you can view a CMYK image without having to change it to RGB).
Affinity Photo: This is the only one that will handle CMYK for print book covers, so if I had to pick one, this would be it, for that reason, alone.